Why Aren’t More Democrats Jumping Off the PIPA Bandwagon?

Stop SOPA

Note: While the Republicans seem to be leading in the Senate by changing their stance, it should be strongly noted that only President Obama and Ron Paul have opposed SOPA or PIPA amongst the presidential candidates.

We had always thought that SOPA and PIPA were wrong for America for more reasons than we could count. From a strictly conservative perspective, adding a new layer of regulations to anything is normally considered bad, but putting it over the internet makes it doubly dangerous. We expected to see a ton in congress jump ship and it made sense that the first batch to bail out would be Republicans.

We simply didn’t think that this many Democrats would hang on.

Of the 18 Senators who jumped ship before the end of the Wednesday Internet Blackout, 16 were Republicans. This is not a win for conservatives. The bill should never have been considered, let alone sponsored, by anyone claiming to appeal to the conservative right and their long-standing tradition of “hands-off” governing with less regulation.

What happened Wednesday is not enough to definitively end either legislation. The retreats that are occurring are, in some cases, strategic. In other words, we can expect the lukewarm opposition to be able to spin it later when a new, better planned series of similar bills are brought up.

It will happen. Even if SOPA and PIPA are DOA, they will return in another form. There’s simply too much money flowing from Hollywood to assume that the battle ends with a defeat of these bills. They’ll tone it down, make the wording less-ambiguous, and attempt to reintroduce a different version of the same concept.

While it’s important to keep an open mind, particularly when their battle against piracy is (for the most part) a righteous one, there must be extreme skepticism and complete scrutiny when this comes up again.

Will more Democrats jump ship in the coming days? Certainly. Can we trust either party to end this altogether. Absolutely not.

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Lorie WimbleLorie is a mother of 2 and is the voice of liberals for Conservative Haven. She lives in Annapolis, MD, and volunteers for the President Barack Obama Re-Election Committee.

Newt Gingrich is the Only Candidate that can Beat Obama

South Carolina Primary

South Carolina Republicans, take note before the upcoming primary. Newt Gingrich is the only candidate that can beat Barack Obama. This isn’t a statement that has been building up based upon continuous, unwavering approval from a passionate supporter. This comes from someone who has been studying every debate, as many speaking engagements as possible, previous history, Obama’s campaign strategies, and the path that the nominee must travel before facing Barack Obama.

Romney cannot win. He showed during the debate on January 16th a few things that make him a weaker candidate than many originally thought. First, he received more boos than anyone from the crowd, one that was most likely made up of conservatives. Without the adamant support of conservatives (particularly financial support in the coming months), Romney will not be able to fight against the barrage of attacks that will come towards him from both sides.

Second, Romney may lead in the polls but it is apparent that his support is based upon Republicans “settling” for who they believe can win rather who they really want. The lack of passionate support following him cannot turn into a victory in November. Even Ron Paul, whose floor is the strongest but whose ceiling is the lowest, would have a better chance than Romney because of the very passion of his supporters that Romney’s lack.

Third, he’s too rich. Estimates put him at a quarter of billion dollars networth. Others say he may be worth closer to a billion. In a world of Occupy Wall Street, that level of wealth will not play well during the campaign.

Finally, the man cannot debate. He doesn’t do well when put on the spot and there is zero doubt that he will be put on the spot by Obama and the media. How he handles situations is poor at best.

Newt Gingrich has the ability to take on Obama in the war of words. More so than Santorum or Paul, Gingrich has answers to questions that resonate with the population. He is the true “Reagan Conservative” that many have hoped for since 1988 and has a track record of being able to work with the other side to make things happen. His personal issues are minor compared to his ability to solve the country’s problems. People will see this.

They’ll vote for Gingrich. They won’t vote for Romney.

Here’s what they think of Gingrich, on the other hand.

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JD RuckerJD is the voice of technology and social media for Conservative Haven and is Editor at Soshable, a Social Media Blog. He is a husband and father of 3 living in Southern California.

Romney Wins by 8 Votes. Who Really Won (and lost) in Iowa?

Iowa Winners and Losers

Mitt Romney, 30,015. Rick Santorum, 30,007.

The official winner of the Iowa Caucus was Mitt Romney, barely edging out Rick Santorum by a microscopic 8 votes. Those results don’t really matter. At the end of the day, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, and Newt Gingrich made gains in the Iowa primary while Mitt Romney, Michele Bachmann, and Rick Perry lost ground.

“But, Romney was at the top and Newt finished a dismal 4th. How could Gingrich be considered a winner?”

We’ll get to that shortly. First, let’s look at the clear winners and losers:

Winner – Rick Santorum

He was a footnote in the GOP picture just a couple of weeks ago but surged at the right time. Now, Santorum must face life as a frontrunner, something that nobody other than Romney has been able to weather. Every other candidate other than Huntsman (who will no longer be mentioned in the conversation) spent time over the last few months as the frontrunner and every other frontrunner other than Romney has been bashed down the pole.

Santorum was the right guy in the right place at the right time. Will it continue on to South Carolina and Florida? We’ll soon find out.

Winner – Ron Paul

Whether the “experts” think he has a shot or not is irrelevant. His supporters are more passionate than any other candidates’ and are the least likely to fade despite criticism from across the spectrum. Placing third in Iowa may have been a disappointment to some, but it’s a clear statement that the Republican establishment has a long way to go before they can truly appeal completely to the masses. Independents came out in force in support of Paul.

The same question that faces Santorum faces Paul. Can he sustain? He has the strongest floor and the lowest ceiling; getting new supporters will be a challenge if he sticks to his guns (which he will) on foreign policy and other issues. With the economy as his strongest selling point, he could still continue to surprise the establishment and hang around just long enough to be a disruption. Who knows? In this crazy race, even the “insane uncle” (as Fox News likes to label him) in the family has a chance. If his message continues to ring true about the economy, something that seemed impossible a couple of weeks ago could become a reality.

Loser – Rick Perry

He outspent everyone in Iowa and still only placed 5th. It’s time for Perry to consider whether he really wants to do more harm to his party or if he should throw his support to Santorum or Gingrich. He won’t be throwing it at Paul or Romney any time soon.

Either way, he’s done. Anything short of an all-out win in South Carolina will likely see him bowing out before Florida.

Loser – Michele Bachmann

She doesn’t have the money to sustain a campaign and really needed a 4th or higher finish to have a chance of raising more. With that option off the table, it’s time for he to go back to Congress.

Winner – Newt Gingrich

Despite crumbling in the last 3 weeks from a certain top-tier finish in Iowa to a dismal 4th, Gingrich was able to score some anti-Romney points with his airtime during election coverage. He is also a possible choice for Perry and Bachmann supporters who must now throw their support in another direction.

Over the next few days, we will hear about how he is in the same position that John McCain was in after Iowa. We will hear about how Reagan was behind at this point in the race in 1980. We will hear about how the tightening field of candidates will favor Gingrich. Whether it’s true or not, we’ll find out, but he managed to score more points than his 4th place finish really shows.

Can he win? Probably not. Can he take Romney down with him? That seems to be the plan.

Loser – Mitt Romney

With fewer votes than he received in 2008, Mitt Romney might be the winner, but this was and always has been his race to lose. He will win handily in New Hampshire, but failing to decisively defeat the pack will hurt him going into South Carolina and Florida. He will be the target just as much as Rick Santorum, perhaps more so, and Republicans who are looking for someone other than Romney will unite behind Santorum, Paul, or Gingrich, whichever can have the best showing later this month.

Is Romney still the likely GOP candidate? Yes. Still, he will face a longer fight than he can afford thanks to this miniscule win. On the other side, Barack Obama’s camp can only hope that the other Republican candidates tear Romney down as much as possible, softening him up before the real showdown in November.

Mitt Romney is the weakest frontrunner either party has seen since Michael Dukakis.

Responses from the Candidates

Romney, Santorum, Paul, and Gingrich all posted on Twitter after midnight in Iowa. President Obama did as well. The other three candidates haven’t posted since the results started coming in. Here’s what they had to say:

Romney Twitter Iowa

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Santorum Twitter Iowa

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Paul Twitter Iowa

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Gingrich Twitter Iowa

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Obama Twitter Iowa

Before the Candidates Say It Tomorrow, We’ll Say It Now: Iowa is Insignificant

Mike Huckabee

Do you recognize that face? If you don’t watch Fox News, you may not recall the sideways, dimpled grin of one-time Republican front-runner Mike Huckabee. In 2008, he was on a good path to the Republican nomination, handily beating everyone with over 40% of the Iowa GOP votes.

John McCain, the eventual nominee that year, came in a distant 4th.

Iowa sets the stage and can act as a wake-up call to the bottom of the barrel, but winning is relative in Iowa. One could make a case that finishing in the top 5 is enough to keep the campaign valid. Currently, the top Iowa race shakes out like this according to the latest USA Today poll:

Iowa Poll

If it plays out like the poll shows, that leaves Bachmann and Huntsman on the outside looking in.

Newt Gingrich still leads national polls and could start pulling states after Romney wins Iowa and New Hampshire, but his campaign needs a jolt of good news. The surge of Rick Santorum and the persistence of Ron Paul’s base of supporters are more trouble for Gingrich than Romney, while Perry’s continuation and deep pockets will lend strength to Romney if and when he bows out.

Iowa is always the center of attention this time of year, but history shows that it’s far from the key indicator of a nominee’s health. Then again, Barack Obama made a bold statement by defeating Hillary Clinton and John Edwards by double digits in Iowa. Maybe there’s more to it than we want to admit.

Either way, one person will be standing there at the end of the night talking about Iowa being the first step towards the nomination while 4 or 5 others will be pointing to the Iowa results of 2008 and calling for a McCain-esque statement to bring them home to the nomination.

Ron Paul’s “Golden Rule” Policy on Iran Won’t Fly for Conservatives (and most other Americans)

Nuclear Iran

No other GOP candidate has the passion of supporters like Ron Paul. It’s to the point that the weather is considered a factor on Tuesday in Iowa; Ron Paul’s supporters would cut through the bitter cold to get to the polls while supporters for other candidates would not be as willing. The forecast for Des Moines on Tuesday is clear with a high of 36 degrees.

Many of his ideas ring true for conservatives. Others sound crazy. The sticking point that will be highlighted in every debate and interview going forward despite the results in Iowa center around his position on Iran.

“If we were prohibited from having imports into this country, we would consider it an act of war,” he said. “The best way to think about this is the golden rule. If we don’t want somebody to do it to us, we shouldn’t do it to them.”

Yesterday, Iran made two announcements that could be construed as nuclear innuendo. First, they declared that they had produced their first nuclear fuel rod, a feat many in the west did not expect so quickly. Then, they test-fired medium-range missiles in the hotspot of the Strait of Hormuz. Coincidence?

While no candidate would support a war with Iran over this or other stabs they’ve taken at the US or Israel in recent months, taking it off the table and removing our military presence in the Middle East is not something conservatives want to see. Even moderates and liberals would likely side with Rick Santorum or Mitt Romney in regards to Iran before they would go with Paul’s assertion of “The Golden Rule” in foreign policy. It’s not that they would want war or an increase in our Middle East presence, but pulling out completely and removing sanctions against a country whose leaders have called America the “Great Satan” is insane in light of their nuclear ambitions.

It’s one thing to be restrained and prudent about foreign policy even with those who have declared America and its allies as enemies. It’s another thing to be oblivious to the reality that a nuclear Iran poses a threat to the entire world if only based upon its proximity to Israel and strategic alliances. Ron Paul’s position is dangerous at best.

3 Reasons Why Democrats Are Drooling Over the Santorum Rise in Iowa

Santorum

While it’s still likely that Romney or Paul will win Iowa, Rick Santorum has made a statement by surging at the right moment in the polls. He has put nearly all of his efforts into winning Iowa, spending 101 days there. Michele Bachmann is a distant second with 79 days in the Buckeye state.

Democrats are loving it. There are three things about Santorum’s rise that bode well for them in the general election.

  1. Continued Uncertainty – If the Republican race comes down to two people as it did early in for the Democrats in 2008, the likely candidate will emerge more quickly. A 3- or 4-person race keeps the attacks coming from multiple directions, allowing Democrats to build up funds and hold their own campaigning at bay for as long as possible. The longer it drags out for the Republicans, the better it will be for the Democrats. Any hope, even a glimmer, that someone can challenge Romney and Paul would prolong the Democrats advantage.
  2. The Insurance Agent Image – Newt Gingrich appears to be a bold strategist on stage. Mitt Romney appears to be a shrewd economics guru. Ron Paul appears to be the voice of logic through radical thought. Rick Santorum appears to be the guy who sold you your life insurance. His image as perceived by the American people will have a hard time against the Obama charisma.
  3. He Doesn’t Debate Well – There’s a difference between someone who is well-spoken and articulate versus someone who compels passion. Rick Santorum’s words are strongly rooted in the conservative thinking that many Republicans want, but his stage-presence is mediocre at best. Only Rick Perry does worse going head-to-head with his competitors.

CBS discusses the rise of Santorum as the man of the hour. Will it take him to a strong showing in Iowa?